The street changes were approved by Councillors in March 2018 following a year-long community engagement process and are being made in partnership with the Government and NZ Transport Agency.
Councillor Sarah Free, the Council’s Portfolio Leader for Walking and Cycling, says the new infrastructure will provide a greater level of protection for people riding bikes on these busy streets and it also includes some improvements for pedestrians such as a new crossing on Crawford Road.
“In the last few months, we’ve seen a big increase in people using bikes to get around, both in the numbers and variety of people riding. These improvements are planned to connect with a wider network of improvements in Newtown, Berhampore and Mt Cook and we will be asking for further feedback from the community on options for those routes in mid-November. It’s an exciting time for cycling in the city.”
On Monday 15 October, contractors will start work on Constable Street to build an uphill bike lane, from Coromandel Street to Alexandra Road. Sharrow road markings will go in on the downhill traffic lane. All parking spaces (about five) will be removed on the uphill side and several on the downhill side. Green wait areas (stop boxes) will go in at the Coromandel Street intersection and green road markings will clearly delineate the bike lane near the Alexandra Road intersection.
Work will start at the Coromandel Street intersection and continue up the hill. The parking that is going, will be removed early and not reinstated. The bus stop will be temporarily relocated just uphill from the existing stop while the work happens. Two traffic lanes will operate at peak times, however traffic will be down to one lane at times.
Also starting on 15 October is the construction of kerbside bike lanes on Rongotai Road, between Onepu Road and Te Whiti Street. The bike lanes will be next to the footpath and protected from the traffic by a raised concrete buffer, which people can park against and use to safely get in and out of cars. Parking for about 30 vehicles will remain – about 17 less than at the moment.
Contractors will start near Tacy Street, and continue in the direction of Troy Street. Work will then happen on the other side starting at Te Whiti Street and working back towards Onepu Road.
In time, the Rongotai Road bike lanes will connect with new paths and improved crossings at the Kilbirnie bus hub. There will also be improved crossings at the Onepu Road intersection for people walking and biking.
From Monday 29 October, work is expected to start on an uphill bike lane on Crawford Road, from Rongotai Road up to Alexandra Road. Most of the parking will be removed on the uphill side, and some on the downhill side. Sharrow road markings will be painted on the downhill traffic lane and a new pedestrian crossing installed near Naughton Terrace.
Both of the uphill bike lanes will be protected from traffic with rubber separators (similar to the bike lane on Rugby Street). Mountable rubber strips will be installed at driveways to remind people driving to take extra care as they cross the bike lanes.
Kerbs at all the bus stops on Constable Street and Rongotai and Crawford roads will be changed so the bike lanes are at footpath level, to make it easier for people getting on and off the bus.
Diggers, trucks and other machinery will be operating so there will be some noise at times.
Work hours will generally be Monday to Friday, 7am to 5pm. Some Saturday work is possible.
Traffic management will be in place around the construction areas, and there will be safe arrangements for people on foot and on bikes. The bus stops will be temporarily relocated nearby the existing stops while the work happens.
The work is expected to be completed during December.